Friday, December 11, 2015

From Clown to Candidate: The Satire of Trump's Political Cartoons

As the campaign progressed, the humor of cartoons shifted from a making fun of Trump or mocking his effect on the Republican Party to ridiculing him for his bombastic rhetoric. To many observers–both left and right - Trump has become less humorous as his supporters have shown more serious support. At the first republican debate, Fox News moderators tried to expose Trump as a joke, yet it failed. At the next debate, moderators tried to show he was not serious. It didn't matter - by this time Trump has a significant enough following that his candidacy is now more than comic relief.

Trump has now spent more than 100 days as the Republican front runner, meaning he has stayed at the top more than any previous fad candidate. Trump's long lasting claim as the top Republican candidate proves extremely worrisome to the rest of the nation who assumed Trump's candidacy to be a satirical joke.

In the beginning of Trump's campaign, the abundance of political cartoons mocked his validity as a candidate. Many cartoonists portrayed him as a clown, mocking his image by suggesting that his campaign is a joke. Certainly his description of Mexican immigrants as "rapists" didn't help his image of political legitimacy.

When asked if he has a political plan or if voters should elect him just because his name is Trump, he responded, "Well, I think they should." Even George W. Bush has made negative comments on Trump. Bush recently said, "...that is a joke. Elect Trump if you want that." Democratic strategists have also commented on Trump's campaign, saying that it has made it easier for the democratic party to win, because of the satire that Trump represents for his party.

Trump has made many other ignorant comments, all of which have become the laughing stock of the campaign. In the following political cartoon titled "All the world loves a clown," the satirical device of caricature is used. Most political cartoons are caricatures, used to exaggerate physical features or traits.

As more people are registering the idea that Trump could actually become the next Republican nominee, Trump's political cartoons have begun to mock his legitimacy less and less. Nonetheless, the cartoons now mock his absurd political statements, and the public isn't clear which is worse. Satirical exaggeration can be seen in this image with the labeled shirts. In the following political cartoon, exaggeration is used to enlarge the two stereotypes beyond normal bounds so that it becomes ridiculous and its faults can be seen. The comic below can also represents situational irony because the "Make America Great Again" man does not understand that he would be deported with the political statement he is supporting.

 Thanks to Trump, political cartoonists now have a plethora of his statements, none of which are challenging to satirize. 

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